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Outlook on Africa’s Gaming Industry 2020-2025 – Mobile Gaming Will Hold a Major Market Share

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Rugby’s global expansion increases in Africa
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The “Africa Gaming Market – Growth, Trends, and Forecasts (2020-2025)” report has been added to ResearchAndMarkets.com’s offering.

The gaming industry is expected to register a CAGR of 12% during the forecast period (2020-2025). The most recent trend is the growing availability and popularity of multi-functional gaming console, which is emerging in the market and helping in growing the market of video games in the region.

Africa is the only region in the world where the youth population is increasing. By 2050 Africa’s young people, i.e., those aged between 0 and 24 years old, will increase by nearly 50 percent. Africa will have the most significant number of young people. Africa’s youth are critical to the continent’s future when it comes to mobile and gaming as a whole.

African studios are making new inroads by launching original locally produced content on Netflix. Several local content productions have been nominated for several global awards, including the Oscars. The Annecy Festival in 2020 will be focusing on animation from Africa. In addition to this, government initiatives in the region are adopting gaming solutions for educational purposes. Developments such as these will provide opportunities for the gaming industry in the area.

During the lockdown, the Entertainment streaming and gaming industries are thriving. The global suspension or cancellation of most sporting events has left punters without live games to bet on, aside from re-runs of filmed matches. The knock-on effect is that sports betting, which accounts for most of the industry’s revenue, has crashed to almost nil.

While the traditional gambling industry is facing unparalleled losses, online gambling sites have reported a surge in activity since the national lockdown came into effect on 27 March 2020. While online casinos worldwide have reported a sharp increase in gambling, as lockdown periods are extended, and financial stresses intensify, people may become increasingly hesitant to spend money on non-essential pastimes, such as gambling.

Key Market Trends

Mobile Gaming Segment Expected to Have Major Market Share

  • Mobile gaming generates close to half of the revenue that the gaming industry gets annually. More than 200 million Africans are below 35 years, and this figure might double in a decade. Africa has a huge market for gaming and smartphone companies.
  • Mobile gaming is gaining popularity in remote parts of Africa. For example, more than 290 million people in North Africa use mobile phones. The mobile market in the region generates $90 billion annually.
  • One of the major drivers for the growth of mobile gaming is the potential to spawn a massive real-money gaming industry around the continent. Mobile tech spreads around the continent, large swaths of Africa are also paving the way for legal betting and gaming.
  • However, acceleration in network rollouts by mobile operators in Sub-Saharan Africa has been a vital driver of the reduction in the coverage gap. Infrastructure deployment in Sub-Saharan Africa increased 3G coverage from 63% in 2017 to 70% in 2018, extending access to more than 80 million people. 3.3 billion people live in areas covered by mobile broadband networks but do not use mobile internet – this usage gap’ is more than four times greater than the coverage gap. Such factors might harm gaming companies operating in the region.

Issues Such as Piracy, Laws & Regulations, and Concerns Relating to Fraud During Gaming Transactions will Impact the Growth of the Market

  • Most African countries have gaming commissions and laws that regulate gambling. South Africa has clear gaming laws and regulations. It was the first country to create gambling regulation in the continent. Also, online casinos are popular in the country.
  • In South Africa, several legislative attempts to further restrict online gambling and payment transactions of unlicensed operators have been postponed in recent years. However, some legislators and regulators at the provincial level have called for a less restrictive regime.
  • There is currently an ongoing political and religious debate on the perceived high number of minors accessing gambling. As a result, in May 2019, the minister of finance urged the National Gaming Board (NGB) to stop issuing gaming and betting licenses immediately. The government restricted gambling advertising as of January 2019. Additional measures to ensure responsible gambling and revenue collection to the state budget are on the list.
  • A new advocacy organization designed to collaborate, coordinate, partner, build and sustain the growth of esports on the continent has been formed. ESFA or The Esports Federation of Africa is established by a community of both private esports entities, and national federations. WESCO affiliates it. With the launch of the ESFA, African gamers now have a voice, an advocate, an organization with grassroots developments of players at its core. These will provide better opportunities and therefore strengthen the local market in the region.

Competitive Landscape

The gaming market is fragmented as the demand for online games, and increasing penetration of mobile applications across the region will help attract new players in this market over the next few years. Recent developments in the market are:

  • In May 2020, Sony announced new PlayStation Studios branding for its first-party PS5 games. Sony will be using the new PlayStation Studios brand for its first-party exclusives going forward as a way to let customers know that a game comes from one of Sony’s in-house development teams.
  • In August 2019, Konami Digital Entertainment BV announced that the mobile version of e-Football PES 2020 would be released in October, and it represents a complete overhaul of the current PES 2019 mobile game. The latest major update to the PES Mobile series, which celebrated over 200 million downloads earlier this year, brings many of the critical features and licenses already announced for e-Football PES 2020 on PC and console.

Africa

SOFTSWISS Sportsbook launches N1Bet.ng

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SOFTSWISS Sportsbook launches N1Bet.ng
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The SOFTSWISS Sportsbook is excited to announce the launch of N1Bet.ng in partnership with N1 Group this September. The platform will launch under a local license in Nigeria, which SOFTSWISS received earlier in February 2021. 

N1Bet.ng will be the first betting platform launched by SOFTSWISS Sportsbook in Africa. This launch is a natural step in the development of the SOFTSWISS Sportsbook brand, which is ready to offer new customers reliable solutions and an innovative approach based on more than a decade of experience. 

Under the new joint project between N1Group and SOFTSWISS players  will have access to the platform’s complete sports betting solution package:

  • 10,000+ real-time events
  • 200+ sports
  • 1,200 unique betting markets 

Even though N1Bet.ng is positioned as a betting platform, gambling solutions will also be included in the range of available services. Users will be pleased with the user-friendly and clear interface designed with their wishes in mind, as well as the mobile version, which will allow them to manage their bets from anywhere at any time. Among other things, players will have access to new features, including three types of Freebet, Comboboost, Quickbet, Maxbet and more.

Alexander Kamenetskyi, Product Owner at SoftSwiss Sportsbook, noted: ‘We have been working on the launch of our first project in the African market for a long time and see this as a unique opportunity to be part of the large and fast-growing iGaming industry in this region. We have a lot to offer and something to interest all betting enthusiasts. The launch of N1Bet.ng will allow SOFTSWISS to provide services to those customers who are interested in a comprehensive approach and focus on the African market or want to expand their presence there. With N1Bet.ng this will now become easier and more accessible. Thank you N1 Group for the fruitful cooperation and trust!’

About SOFTSWISS 

SOFTSWISS is an international tech brand supplying widely acclaimed, certified software solutions for managing iGaming operations. SOFTSWISS holds a number of gaming licenses, providing a “one-stop-shop” white label solution by taking care of all technical, legal, and financial processes on behalf of its customers. The company has a vast product portfolio, which includes an Online Casino Platform, Game Aggregator with thousands of casino games, the Affilka affiliate platform, and a sportsbook software platform. In 2013 SOFTSWISS was the first in the world to introduce a bitcoin-optimized online casino solution. The company has thus been regarded as the leading technical expert when it comes to the use of cryptocurrencies in online gaming.

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Africa

Yggdrasil launches first Franchise partner in Africa via Intelligent Gaming

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Greentube, the NOVOMATIC Interactive division, has partnered with Golden Nugget Online Gaming to make its long-awaited debut in the US. Titles from Greentube's top-performing games portfolio will be made available to GoldenNuggetCasino.com players in New Jersey, including Diamond Cash™: Mighty Elephant, Diamond Cash™: Mighty Sevens and Diamond Cash™: Oasis Riches. The deal is a milestone achievement for Greentube as the supplier looks to use its significant European experience to work with operators in the growing number of regulated states. Partnering with market-leading operator Golden Nugget Online Gaming is an important strategic step for Greentube and makes the supplier well positioned for future opportunities. The supplier is currently in the process of completing additional deals across numerous states as part of its expansion strategy for North America. Michael Bauer, CFO/CGO at Greentube, said: "The US offers unparalleled potential and is a key territory for us going forward as regulation continues to make headway across different states. Finally making our debut in New Jersey is a huge achievement for us and we are thrilled to partner with such a renowned operator as Golden Nugget and to introduce our content to their customers. We see this market entry as a first and very important step into the US market and are preparing ourselves for future launches in Michigan and Pennsylvania as well." Warren Steven, Vice President of Golden Nugget Online Gaming, said: "Greentube is a supplier with a great track-record in Europe, having developed blue-chip titles, as well as innovative new games, that have proven longevity in numerous markets. This partnership will significantly enhance our existing offering with premium content, and we are excited to be the first operator in the US to give our customers access to the Greentube portfolio."
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South African platform provider Intelligent Gaming Limited (IGL) has become Yggdrasil’s latest Franchise partner, marking the supplier’s debut on the African continent.

Following regulatory approval and a successful integration, Yggdrasil’s premium iGaming content is now live with IGL and available to the company’s operator partners in South Africa via the innovative Franchise solution.

The Franchise solution provides IGL access to Yggdrasil’s modern technology stack, a catalogue of around 150 online games, and industry-leading promotional tools. Becoming a Franchise partner will extend IGL’s reputation as a premium online provider of iGaming content in its local African markets. IGL will be able to scale operations seamlessly via Franchise and in turn provide its African partners and players with premium online games from Yggdrasil.

IGL is a leading aggregator of content in the South African gaming market and supplies digital content to a range of operators, all of which will now have access to Yggdrasil’s games.

Through the Franchise solution, IGL will distribute Yggdrasil’s award-winning online casino suite as well as the third-party games from the YG Masters program. The first IGL operator to offer Yggdrasil games is Supabets, a popular sports betting and casino brand with a vast retail and digital business in South Africa and other African countries.

Andrew Pegler, Director of Commercial Operations at Yggdrasil, said: “This is a milestone achievement for Yggdrasil as we penetrate a massive market opportunity. We are very happy to have Intelligent Gaming as a Franchisee.

“This deal provides them with everything that has been created by Yggdrasil in the past eight years and will enhance their growing business operations in Africa. They are an ambitious, experienced, and well-connected supplier and see the huge potential of taking a Franchise in their key markets. This deal demonstrates how Yggdrasil is becoming a leading worldwide publisher of online gaming content.”

Marc Plaxton-Harrison, Co-Founder and CEO at Intelligent Gaming, said: “Intelligent Gaming is extremely proud to be a Franchise partner for Yggdrasil in South Africa and Africa. The games offered by Yggdrasil are of outstanding quality and will have a significant role to play in the market. I am extremely excited about this partnership.”

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Africa

SA Court Ruling Prohibits Lottery Betting

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The Mpumalanga High Court has ruled that betting on the outcome of lotteries is in contravention of South Africa’s Lotteries Act (1997) and should be prohibited.

The ruling was made at the end of August 2021 in a long-running court case between the lottery operator Ithuba and various parties, including Lottostar Pty.

The judges ruled that “the scheme of Lottostar whereby it offers bets, whether or not of a fixed-odd nature, on the outcome of lotteries is declared unlawful” and that Lottostar “is interdicted from offering bets, whether or not of a fixed-odd nature, on the outcome of any lottery”.

The court decided that betting on lotteries was in contravention of Section 57 of the Lotteries Act: a person will be guilty of an offence if he or she conducts, organises, promotes, devises or manages any scheme, plan, competition, arrangement, system, game or device which directly or indirectly provides for betting, wagering, gambling or any other game of risk on any outcome of any lottery unless authorised by or under this Act or any other law.

Ithuba has argued that lottery betting does not contribute to good causes and reduced the revenues of the national lottery.

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